What if you spent every day looking for One Beautiful Thing?



jazz 0

Melissa McCracken

syn·es·the·sia [sin-uh s-thee-zhuh] noun. 1. the production of a sense impression relating to one sense or part of the body by stimulation of another sense or part of the body.

Melissa McCracken paints music, which I find fascinating. I didn’t even know that was a thing!. She describes herself as a synesthete, one who can see a visual representation of audio stimulus, and her art is nothing short of gorgeous. As a child, McCracken believed that everyone in her world could see sound the way she could. It wasn’t until her early teen years that she realized she was somewhat unique.

“Basically, my brain is cross-wired. I experience the ‘wrong’ sensation to certain stimuli. Each letter and number is colored and the days of the year circle around my body as if they had a set point in space. But the most wonderful ‘brain malfunction’ of all is seeing the music I hear. It flows in a mixture of hues, textures, and movements, shifting as if it were a vital and intentional element of each song.”

Her beautiful, expressive paintings make me envious of her brain’s unique way of processing sound. I am very glad that such diversity of perception exists in the world, and I’m grateful that artists like McCracken have found ways of sharing their differences with us.

You can view more of McCracken’s stunning paintings on her website and on Instagram.

All images property of Melissa McCracken.

Author: Donna from MyOBT

I have committed to spending part of every day looking for at least one beautiful thing, and sharing what I find with you lovelies!

24 thoughts on “Synesthesia

  1. WOW, it’s beautiful! I knew it was a thing due to A Mango Shaped Space (a YA novel), but just WOW.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is new to me but how wonderful she is able to direct this ,what ever it is, instead of being put into a nut house.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes, I love this!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This is a common trait in autism…I wonder if she’s on the spectrum? Either way, it seems pretty cool to “see” music. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m a synesthete too – though my visions are somewhat different than Melissa’s. I don’t paint a lot of them, though – don’t have enough space to store a third body of work. This is the only one I’ve done beyond a quick watercolor sketch:

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I wish that the artist told us what music she was listening to when doing the painting. I don’t see the 1812 Overture. I wonder what a Cello solo would look like. But I l the classics. I have seen some music covers sort of in that mode. hl

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I knew someone years ago who had this condition too. She was a music teacher and who visualised music as patterns and movements of colour. She didn’t paint, however, so it is fascinating to see how someone with this condition translates it into a visual medium. It’s really very cool.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. They’re lovely paintings! How exotic her condition is!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Pingback: Come Along With Cosmo | My OBT

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